Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, who serves on the Appropriations Committee, says while a new two-year budget deal sets overall federal spending levels, the details will still have to be negotiated on Capitol Hill.
“We already charted out what our priorities are, the key is going to be plugging in the numbers, and that is no easy task,” she says.
The sweeping deal agreed to by congressional leaders and the Trump administration adds over $320 billion in new spending, raises the nation’s debt limit and ends the 2011 law that triggers automatic cuts in the case of a budget impasse. It sets overall spending levels for all federal programs, except for entitlements such as Social Security and Medicaid.
Once the bill is passed, the House and Senate appropriations committees will have to allocate spending. But With Congress on recess in August and facing a budget year that ends on Sept. 30, Collins says it’s likely that a continuing resolution will be needed to give lawmakers time to finalize details.